Monday, October 22, 2007

The Problems of the World

A few random thoughts and comments....

First, I recently came across this quote from Shantideva amongst my
collection:

"All the joy the world contains is through wishing happiness for others.
All the misery the world contains has come through wanting pleasure for
oneself."

The basic difficulty is selfishness (and that is with a small 's'). But
it's slightly more complicated then that. Let's see if we can't disentangle
it a bit.

1. Our initial idea is to find happiness for ourselves. While in and of
itself there is nothing wrong with that, in too many cases it involves
getting something from someone else or in someway depriving others of
something to do it. For instance, the basic 'necessities' of life are a
given, and under normal circumstances there is plenty to go around.
However, when certain people find that they need more than someone else,
then things go bad. This is in essence the human condition because of a
lack of satisfaction. People want what they don't have.

2. Wanting for oneself versus others also creates that sense of separation
- me versus others. When you want for others, and sincerely find joy in
seeing others happy, it minimizes the sense of 'me'. It begins to create an
identification with the other, expanding your sense of Self. Whatever
shifts the focus of attention from 'I, me, mine' to others - whether that
is extended 'me' (i.e. Family, tribe, nation), or to a Supreme Other -
Godhead, the Divine, etc. will help lessen the attachment and
identification to the individualized self.

3. The endeavor to become awakened comes from a personalized sense of self,
but it is also a recognition that the individualized ego sense is not
happy, and will ultimately never be happy seeking it's own gratification.
So although for many Enlightenment starts as the ultimate Ego-trip, it
actually necessitates the end of the ego. At this point, one can truly do
the most for apparent 'others' because it will not be based on selfish
desire. Here it is most undoubtedly the deepest innate sense of compassion
and expression of natural Love.

Well, that's all for now.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Nothing to Know

In the sixth part of the Yoga Vasistha it says:

"The belief in a knower and the known is called bondage. The knower is
bound by the known; he is liberated when there is nothing to know."

This is so contrary to most people's way of being that it's hard for most
to even get a hint at this, primarily because everyone is anxiously
awaiting the point where 'they' will be a 'knower' of the Absolute; 'They'
will have achieved enlightenment. Once more, dear friends, it doesn't work
that way. For a moment, just stop. In that moment, is there anyone to know
anything? Is there anything to know? In the silence between thoughts - no!
However, a half moment later a thought will probably arise saying,
something like, "Cool" or "But I was there knowing I was not a knower", or
some other such evaluatory statement. (Is evaluatory a word?)

Where there is no thought, that is where there is no knower or known. That
occurs through letting go of all thoughts, and/or the committed inquiry
into what is the knower. The knower (I-ness) also arises in the sea of
consciousness, but it to is simply an imposition. It is formed in large
part by the ideas or beliefs that form an idea of a knower. This is why so
often the quest for wisdom is antithetical to true wisdom. You are trying
to know MORE when the idea is to know LESS, and even more so, to recognize
there is nothing to know.

This moment is simply happening; it's not happening TO somebody. A
'somebody' appears to be arising in this moment, but it is just that...an
appearance.

So, what is so damn important to know (or do or see or achieve)? Be the
bliss of non-knowing!